When Jesus came to us with all His truth and power He met with great resistance. He was questioned, challenged and criticized because He claimed to forgive sin, allowed His disciples to omit fasting, consorted with sinners and permitted His disciples to pluck ears of corn on the Sabbath. He was charged with being in complicity with the devil and because of His reasoning in the synagogue the pharisees railed against Him and plotted to destroy Him.

It seems unbelievable to us today as we look back on His life…but has anything really changed? For the most part the ‘common man’ accepted Jesus but those in religious authority did not and that is where the persecution came from. Today there are many, many denominations and groups that claim to have Christian truth, but virtually none of them allow for any deviation from their established doctrine and tradition. The bottom line is that they deny the individual being led by the Holy Spirit. Many would challenge anyone who claims to be led of the Lord, if in any way it does not fit with reason or established practice. This thinking even filters down to specific beliefs such as predestination, eternal security and modes of baptism; if an individual does not accept a certain principle he is out of touch with God and simply misled.

Can you imagine what people said when Abraham claimed to be on his way to the mount to sacrifice his son? Can you visualize the stir when Hosea said God told him to marry a prostitute, or Gideon was told to reduce his army to 300 men, or Sampson was allowed to marry a Philistine. The list goes on and on.

The wonder of the true Christian faith is that every believer can hear directly from the Lord. It often does not conform to the tradition of man or the normal practice of the day and it will certainly be challenged by the established religious authority around us. Jesus said His children would suffer as He did and if we are not … on which side of this issue does that put us?

I will never turn back,
He’s my light every day;
No, I’ll never turn back,
For my Saviour is leading the way…(I Will Never Turn Back)

Finally, there is an enormous joy, peace and rest that comes with knowing that the Lord has spoken (as out of the norm as it may seem to be) and nothing can take that away from the TRUE child of God.

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